August 20, 1941
#487 (Part 1 of 2)
Re the last part of your #705 [a].
We cannot, of course, predict what the outcome of the Russo-German war will be, but this does not preclude our anticipating the fact that in case Soviet Russia loses and as a result the Stalin Regime disintegrates, Far Eastern Russia will be thrown into political confusion. It is a self-evident fact that Japan is pressed with the necessity of taking precautionary measures for the sake of maintaining peace in the Far East as well as for the sake of Japan's national defense and security, in view of the actuality that that part of Soviet Russia is adjacent to Japan and Manchukuo. Furthermore, since, due to the Russo-German war, there is a possibility of the influence of a third power being implanted in Far Eastern Soviet Russia, as for instance of Soviet Russia resorting to such unfriendly act as to allow the establishment of —----- and military bases in the Maritime province of Siberia or in Kamchataka, and consequently of the security of both Japan and Manchukuo being threatened, we need to prevent such a thing from happening.
The Japanese Government has decided to increase the Japanese forces in Manchukuo to the minimum number necessary to cope with such a possibility. On the other hand negotiations are being carried on in Tokyo with Soviet officials in order to arrive at a friendly solution of various matters having to do with this area. I understand that the Soviet officials have been instructed by the party leaders to be cautious in their attitude toward the forces stationed in Manchukuo. This is solely for your information.
Army 21234 Trans. 8/19/41 (S)
[a] S.I.S. #21165. NOMURA asks to be informed for his own information what the Japanese government intends to do with regard to her northern policy.
August 20, 1941
#487 (Part 2 of 2)
If the United States Government asks you questions concerning the increase of Japanese troops in the North, will you explain to them suitably as your own view of the matter what I have pointed out above. Impress upon their minds that the movement of the troops has for its objective purely preventive precautions against unforeseen emergency and that by it we will be able to forestall any possibility of peace in the Far East being disturbed.
Recently when the Soviet Ambassador in Tokyo inquired about this matter, I replied that so long as the Russian Government lives up to the treaty Japan also will be faithful to it. The Ambassador was very much pleased to hear this, saying that my statement had clarified the matter. This is solely for your information.
If it becomes definitely known that the United States is shipping iron, airplanes and other materials by way of Japanese coastal waters to assist Soviet Russia, this fact would unnecessarily provoke the feelings of the Japanese people, and it cannot be said that it will not have an unfavorable effect on the question of readjusting Japanese-American relations—a question which is at the present stage a very delicate one. We would like, therefore, to see the United States refrain from such action. Will you take a good opportunity and tactfully call the attention of the United States authorities to this fact. Today I personally called the attention of the American Ambassador to it.
Army 21235 Trans. 8/20/41 (S)
(EXHIBITS OF JOINT COMMITTEE , EXHIBIT NO. 1 INTERCEPTED DIPLOMATIC MESSAGES SENT BY THE JAPANESE GOVERNMENT BETWEEN JULY l AND DECEMBER 8, 1941)